What should I do when my answer is being down voted? Should I delete it? Because if I leave it, more users will just down vote it, which costs reputation. But if I delete it any (possibly limited) information that is in my answer and the attached comments will be lost.

For example in this case, mind you my answer isn't very usefull, so I don't disagree with the downvotes, just wondering what I should do with it.

2 Answers 2


You should take a down-vote as the need to give an answer some attention. Courteous down-voters will tell you what the problem is and (assuming they're right, they might not be) that'll let you know if you should be deleting or improving your answer.

Unfortunately there aren't always comments and you have to use your own judgement. If you can't decide, feel free to ask in here or (for a quicker response) in the chat room.

  • So if my answer is a dead end and probably won't lead to an answer, I should just delete it?
    – Minos
    Commented Nov 6, 2013 at 11:55
  • 7
    If it's unlikely to help other people, yes. With the example of the Skype answer, I think load is technically unlikely to be the problem (I'm not saying it's impossible, just that the user would have noticed it elsewhere before Skype). I would delete if it were my answer.
    – Oli Mod
    Commented Nov 6, 2013 at 12:06
  • 9
    @Minos Be careful though because if you delete too many of your answers you could get answer banned. You will occasionally get a random downvote, for unknown reasons. Remember one downvote doesn't necessarily mean it's a bad answer!
    – Seth
    Commented Nov 6, 2013 at 18:25
  • 1
    @Seth is there a fixed limit to how many answers you can delete or is a percentage of your total answers? Not that I was planning on going round and deleting all my answers.
    – Minos
    Commented Nov 8, 2013 at 9:23
  • 1
    @Minos No one really knows, that is internal information of Stack Exchange. See this question meta.stackexchange.com/questions/86997/is for more information.
    – Seth
    Commented Nov 8, 2013 at 15:11
  • I would think that accounts are not answer-banned simply for having deleted some answers. The intention is to block accounts which are providing many terrible answers. It should be very easy to avoid having this happen to you. Commented Nov 11, 2013 at 18:51

If the answer is total junk, then delete it. No need to clutter up the page with that kind of thing.

If there is some part of it that is wrong, but the rest is good, then you should edit the answer. You can use the <strike>strikeout</strike> font if you want to show the part that you have corrected.

  • 5
    No need to use the strikeout, IMO. Just edit the text and save. Users will see that the text has been edited and can roll back for further research if they want to. Commented Nov 16, 2013 at 0:43
  • Yes, only use strikeout when removing something would cause the rest to not make sense anymore. Commented Nov 16, 2013 at 0:54

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